Some people collect coins, others stamps. I collect video games.
PlayStation One games are probably the easiest thing for me to collect right now. While I would love to begin buying old 8 and 16-bit cartridge games such as Mario and the Seven Stars, Star Tropics or the original Streets of Rage collection, I sadly wouldn’t have anything to play them on. The back connection where you insert the power adapter for my SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System) broke about a year and a half after I originally had it and my original Nintendo was lost years ago. I have heard of third party systems that play multiple series, or generations of games in one machine, but I am always cautious about them. For the relatively somewhat cheap prices they sell for sometimes, I wonder exactly how much of that money is actually put towards quality. But I’ve been really wanting to play some of those old classics again.
So for the time being, PlayStation One-era games have been the things I have been collecting. I’m usually pretty cautious about purchasing these games at places such as pawn shops, friends or even my local flea market because quite frankly, most are never kept in good condition. There are usually bad scratches, marker writings all over them and the case. And that’s even assuming that a replacement or the original case and manuals are included which at most times, they’re unfortunately not. So when I have a chance to grab a new game, still originally sealed, I usually try to get them. “Try” is the keyword, because finding past games still with their original seal and plastic wrap, usually fetch quite a pretty penny depending on the game.
When looking up games on eBay, I’ll usually put a somewhat relativity generic term in the search box and click enter. “PlayStation 1 Games” as an example to see what comes up to maybe look for at a later time. And it just so happens that one particular game came up that involves two different hobbies of mine – Games and Comic Books. So when I scrolled down and viewed the generic stock photo from someone selling the “Disc Only” copy, I had almost completely forgotten that there was a Danger Girl video game published by THQ Games.
Around the 1990’s comic books, particularly those from the Image/Wildstorm catalog became extremely popular to the point that merchandise was being made for them left and right. From cartoons, action figures (they’re not dolls), trading cards and of course even video games. J. Scott Campbell has to be one of my favorite comic artists (along with Jim Lee, Marc Silvestri and Todd Macfarlane) and he definitely has an affliction for drawing the female form. But this is definitely not a bad thing (Look up his work and you probably won’t argue). As I’ve always said: Play to your strengths, and Mr. Campbell definitely does this as there are very few who can match him in this category. So to have a game modeled after characters of his work seemed to be something that I might be interested in.
So I did a search for the Danger Girl game on eBay, and surprisingly found that brand new copies don’t usually sell for too much. Actually they were priced around the $35-$50 price range. Roughly the same amount as when the game was originally released. This obviously raised some concerns with me that maybe this game wasn’t on the high side of the must-play scale. But then when is any licensed video game, honestly? Or perhaps there are more copies out there than supply for it can demand. After a while, I found someone who according to their eBay listing claimed to have the game at the price of $15, brand new with the original white seal at the top of the game. This was surprising as most new PlayStation One games, unless they are completely obscure or widely known to be terrible, aren’t usually priced that low. Perhaps it was someone simply trying to clear out some space. Maybe he was a vendor who didn’t know exactly what he had. Or, maybe he did and just wanted to get rid of it.
While searching for some more information for the game, I stumbled onto the game’s page on the Amazon.com site to, low and behold, find a different third-party vendor who was also selling the game also for the price of $15. After a day of thought (which in hind sight I probably shouldn’t have done), I decided to purchase both copies with the intention of opening one copy to play and saving the other in its original wrapping. Plus I figured I could snag two copies for the price of what seemed to be one. Well, too the winner goes the prizes, because the copy on Amazon was sold when I returned and the next price there was around the original $35-$50 range once again. Luckily the copy on eBay remained so I bought that one. I afterwards looked up game play video on it, and after witnessing what I purchased, I thought maybe I’ll keep the game in the plastic after all.
In my very first posting of this series, I mentioned I picked up a copy of Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds for my PlayStation 3. I’ve always enjoyed the Marvel vs. Capcom series of fighting games, but one of the problems I had with this entry was that it had no Mega Man or Strider Hiryu available to play or choose (never mind the ridiculous DLC at launch and limited or missing characters and modes).
So after realizing I bought a copy of Danger Girl, I returned to look up more games and found someone selling a copy of Strider 2. Let’s be clear, this wasn’t the US Gold developed Strider II or Journey from Darkness: Strider Returns as it’s known here in North America. I mean the Capcom produced sequel for the game we [hopefully] all know for the PlayStation One.
I remember playing the original in the arcades and I heard about a sequel made, but it must have slipped my mind during the time it came out or I assumed they simply meant the NES games I mentioned earlier. I then did a full search for copies of the game and was hoping after the luck I had with the pricing I found for Danger Girl, I might have some luck with this game also. Well that idea was scrapped the second I witnessed the prices for simply used copies of the game. These prices were into the $40 and above range with Brand New copies going for over one hundred dollars and more. A reason for this might be because I found that these copies of the game come with a bonus disc with a port of the original Strider from arcades included. Little bonuses such as that, while great, will simply drive the prices up for certain games.
A bit of luck did come my way in the fact that I found someone with a “Buy It Now, Or Best Offer” option on their copy. I negotiated a price that I thought was still a bit steep, but fair for us both in the fact that I did not have to pay higher than forty-five dollars for the game with shipping included.
Plus I can say that this is one of the few games that I did in fact play when I received it. And I found that the game is very short. So short that you can count the amount of levels within the game with one hand, plus the game grants you unlimited number of continues. I completed the game from start to finish within less than an hour. I thought it was fun, just too brief. What also didn’t help was that another person listed their copy of the game at the price of $35 after I purchased this one for the price I did.